Regardless of how you may have voted in the recent presidential election, the one thing that was a definite outcome was that this nation is still divided on many levels. Granted, there are many issues that we as citizens of this nation must work to make better, but the greater concern for me is the division that I see within the body of Christ.
This isn't a word necessarily concerning political agendas or platforms. It's not a word concerning the division of whether or not there is a rapture. It's not even a word concerning the debate of a strange fire. I want to share with you a recent vision the Lord showed me in prayer concerning the ekklesia and the days that are before us.
There's That Word
As the final weeks of the presidential election drew to a close, I became more and more burdened by what I was seeing by many in ministry. Granted, most of my burdens were the result of what was being said by those in prophetic ministry. However, there were plenty of craziness coming from apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, deacons, elders and church members. To say I was grieved before the elections is an understatement to how I felt the days following the election.
Whether it was social media status updates, Facebook LIVE, Periscope or something else, it appears that many within the body of Christ have a serious problem with the understanding of integrity.
"Integrity: the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness."
Although we are in one of the greatest moments of history (concerning the body of Christ and the world), we are also in a season where there are many who are using manipulation, greed and deception to gain crowds that will ultimately fuel their personal fame. It is a major problem we must be willing to address, but address in a way that we don't lose our ability to walk in honor towards others. The worst thing that could happen is for the world to see the body of Christ cut each other down one by one while the world watches. We must have integrity in the ekklesia so that we may see the kingdom of God advance more than before.
Not many days ago I was in prayer for not only this nation, but for the ekklesia. It was during that time that the Lord revealed to me a simple image with a direct statement. The image was a set of scales you would normally see in a courtroom or in the office of a judge. The moment I saw the scales, I was immediately thinking, scales of justice. Actually I was expecting the scales to be just that, but then I saw one word written at the top of the bar that held each scale. That word was integrity. Then I heard in my spirit, "I am tipping the scales of integrity. I am calling forth those who will walk in integrity, removing those who choose to walk in immorality. I am revealing those who have devoted themselves to holiness, righteousness and purity. I am revealing those so that they may take the place of the ones who chose self-righteousness over the righteousness of Christ."
When I saw the scales and heard the word from the Lord, I had to go back to the Word of God to confirm what I was hearing/seeing. What I failed to remember but quickly discovered was the word that is recorded in Job 31. In this chapter Job is asserting himself in the way that he lives his life. What's interesting is what it says in verse 5-6: "If I have walked with falsehood, or if my foot has chased after deceit, Oh, let Him weigh me with accurate scales, and let God know my integrity."
In these two verses, Job is calling upon God to defend him according to his integrity. The scales Job is describing represent justice from God. However, it is very interesting to realize that Job is connecting the justice of God to his devotion to integrity. I believe it's critical we understand what Job was saying when he is asking for God to be a judge unto him solely based on his life of integrity. With that thought, how many of us (especially leaders) would welcome that kind of judgment from God concerning our own integrity. Naturally, here lies another problem that we are faced with today: judgment.
Beyond integrity, it seems as though the unspeakable word in the body of Christ today is the word "judgment." We have misunderstood, misapplied and misdirected judgment. Especially judgment when it comes to how God works. For many, they truly believe that God is so loving that He would never permit a person to go to hell. Therefore they live their live with no regrets of anything, living a life without repentance.
Then you have many who truly believe God is a mean man sitting on a throne with a lightning bolt in His hand, ready to strike you down. Those who believe this live their life in constant fear of making God angry, so they live a legalistic life. Both are wrong and both have created major issues. Both are wrong, and yet both have small doses of reality. God is sitting on a throne, and He is in Love with you. God is love, but God is also a judge. He is a Father, and He is also Almighty. We have to know God isn't angry and ready to strike us down, but He is still God who requires holiness, purity, righteousness, honesty and integrity.
The tipping of the scales of integrity is the proof of God's love and the proof of His judgment. 1 Peter 4:17 declares, "For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God, and if it begins first with us, what shall the end be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?
We have managed to make God so much of Abba, that we have failed to remember the Father. Many are convinced that God is a daddy who loves without repercussion to our disobedience. This isn't true, as we know Hebrews 12:6 declares, "for whom the Lord loves he disciplines, and scourges every son whom he receives." Also, Proverbs 3:12 reads, "for whom the Lord loves He corrects, even as a father the son in whom he delights."
We have created this concept of a loving God without correction, and sadly it has inadvertently enabled many leaders that simply refuse to walk in integrity. These leaders who choose immorality over integrity, do and say as they please without repentance. They easily explain why they said things in error, or why they made this decision without remorse. The explanation from some of these leaders are very comical at times as they use crafty words to worm their way out of their mistakes.
It's as though a King Saul syndrome has invaded many leaders. They acknowledge their error by blaming others, then seek out the blessing before the congregation and crowds. It truly is astounding to hear some of the spins that is put out there.
While reading this word, if you recognize Holy Spirit speaking to you concerning the lack of integrity in your life, I want to encourage you to repent for any immorality that is revealed. I want to remind you of the value of integrity. I want you to know that God loves you, but He does expect so much more.
Personally, I believe that this vision/word is a warning. God is warning us, especially leaders to repent and turn back to the righteousness of Christ. We have to be willing to seek His Face, but in doing so we must walk with integrity to how we seek. Please understand my heart in what I am saying. I am in no way implying that God is waiting to strike those down with judgment because of a lack of integrity. However, I am saying that because many will refuse to walk in integrity, judgment from God will be inevitable.
It is a far better thing for you to sit down for a season rather than have God remove you. The days of living as a person of holiness behind the pulpit but a pimp on the outside are coming to an end. God is cleaning His house. With the restoration of five-fold ministry, God is also positioning those who have been hidden for this time to be the evidence of the righteousness of Christ.
The world isn't looking for another great sermon to be wooed by; the world is seeking the goodness of God without hypocrisy. There is a revolution that has begun. It's called reformation, and whether you are an apostle, prophet, teacher, evangelist, pastor, deacon, elder or Christian ... God is calling the ekklesia back to integrity. The scales of integrity have been tipped, and the one question that remains is this: Which side of the scale will you be on?
Ryan Johnson is mantled in equipping the body of Christ to awaken the nations with a prophetic call of a rising ekklesia. As a revivalist and apostolic minister, Ryan ministers with a prophetic voice of revival and awakening, with the demonstration of God's purposes in regions, individuals, and the church.
For the original article, visit ryanjohnson.us.
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